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Dalvin Cook

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Evidently the Jets aren't 100 percent confident in Breece Hall's ACL recovery after all. Or GM Aaron Rodgers just wants to make sure the team has plenty of options. Whatever the case, the Jets have another high-caliber running back, after bringing in Dalvin Cook.

That nice performance by Israel Abanikanda in last weekend's preseason game? Great, New York will have a nice No. 3 or 4 running back to roster in dynasty leagues. But he's unlikely to get a chance this year, because some combination of Cook and Hall will be leading the way.

Complicating things are injury recoveries -- for both players. Hall is coming back from the torn ACL, and signing Cook suggests the team wants to bring their talented second-year back along slowly. But Cook himself is coming off shoulder surgery, and Adam Schefter reports that he's "at least another week away from practicing."

With the season more than three weeks away, that's not a big deal; presumably Cook will be healthy for Week 1. But it's fair to wonder if either will be a great fantasy choice. Committee backfield, here we come.

Since the Jets are apparently paying Cook $8.6 million for 2023 (I say apparently because what's initially reported isn't always an accurate representation of the terms; "up to $8.6M" includes lots of numbers under that figure), Cook should be the primary back. Particularly with Hall's ACL recovery, would make sense for him to be more of a secondary player. Then again, he's a talented guy who is part of the future, so he should be a little more than a backup, too. And he's been removed from the PUP list, so they're expecting to have him available for Week 1.

Hall is 10 pounds heavier, so maybe he'll be the preferred choice near the goal line (maybe). As for pass game contributions, it remains to be seen who will get those chances. Probably Cook, who's more experienced and capable in that area. But that's debatable, since the numbers suggest neither one is great at it.

A year ago, 43 running backs saw at least 30 targets. Hall's catch rate of just over 61 percent was worse than all but one of those backs. Cook, at 69.6 percent, was better than only seven of them.

RUNNING BACK CATCH RATES, 2022 (30-PLUS TARGETS)
PlayerRunTgtNoRecTDCtch
Deon Jackson, Ind.2363430209288.2%
Leonard Fournette, T.B.6688373523688.0%
Rachaad White, T.B.4815850290386.2%
David Montgomery, Chi.8014034316685.0%
Jaylen Warren, Pitt.3793328214184.8%
Austin Ekeler, LAC9151271077221884.3%
Josh Jacobs, L.V.165364534001282.8%
Aaron Jones, G.B.11217259395781.9%
Nyheim Hines, 2TM333730241481.1%
Derrick Henry, Ten.153841333981380.5%
Joe Mixon, Cin.8147560441980.0%
Kareem Hunt, Cle.4684435210479.5%
James Conner, Ari.7825846300879.3%
Antonio Gibson, Was.5465846353579.3%
Jerick McKinnon, K.C.29171565121078.9%
Christian McCaffrey, 2TM1139108857411378.7%
Rhamondre Stevenson, N.E.10408869421678.4%
Melvin Gordon, Den.3183225223278.1%
Ameer Abdullah, L.V.203225211178.1%
Travis Etienne, Jac.11254535316577.8%
Najee Harris, Pitt.103453412291077.4%
Kenneth Walker, Sea.10503527165977.1%
Latavius Murray, 2TM7603527132677.1%
Dameon Pierce, Hou.9393930165576.9%
Michael Carter, NYJ4025441288375.9%
Saquon Barkley, NYG131276573381075.0%
Samaje Perine, Cin.3945138287674.5%
Alvin Kamara, N.O.8977757490474.0%
Raheem Mostert, Mia.8914231202573.8%
Eno Benjamin, 3TM3133425193273.5%
Devin Singletary, Buff.8195238280673.1%
Nick Chubb, Cle.152537272391373.0%
Rex Burkhead, Hou.805137204272.5%
Tony Pollard, Dall.100755393711270.9%
Jonathan Taylor, Ind.8614028143470.0%
Dalvin Cook, Min.117356392951069.6%
D'Andre Swift, Det.5427048389868.6%
Cordarrelle Patterson, Atl.6953121122967.7%
J.D. McKissic, Was.954027173067.5%
James Cook, Buff.5073221180365.6%
AJ Dillon, G.B.7704328206765.1%
Breece Hall, NYJ4633119218561.3%
Jeff Wilson, 2TM8603722185659.5%

Plenty of factors go into catch rates, including quarterback accuracy. The Jets are better in that regard this year than last. But odds seems to be against Hall getting those opportunities, and while Cook is probably more likely, it could also be a chance for Michael Carter to be a factor. Not that he was great either, as shown in the table, but he was better than the others.

I don't expect I'll be rushing to draft a Jets running back, at all.

--Andy Richardson

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